Inside the IAAF: who knew what and when

Senior figures inside the IAAF, such as Lamine Diack, have been implicated in the Russian blood-doping scandal which dates back at least to 2009

Lamine Diack

IAAF president 1999-2015

Accused by Wada’s independent commission of “deliberately inserting” Habib Cissé into the IAAF’s anti-doping department in November 2011 to manipulate Russian athlete biological passport cases, although likely to have known about Russian doping before then. Last month Diack reported to have told French police that he sought £1m in bribes from Valentin Balakhnichev, the IAAF treasurer and president of Russia’s athletics federation, to cover up doping in 2011. Balakhnichev denies the claim.

Nick Davies

Deputy general secretary

August-December 2014

Leaked emails from July 2013 showed when Davies was IAAF director of communications he discussed managing the release of Russian bans to avoid negative publicity around the 2013 world championships. Was also told about the extortion of Liliya Shobukhova in February 2013 by the IAAF whistleblower Sean Wallace-Jones. Stepped down voluntarily while IAAF ethics committee reviewed his case. Pound’s report claimed he was “well aware of Russian skeletons in the cupboard”.

Habib Cissé

Legal adviser to President Diack 2003-14

Was allegedly inserted into the IAAF anti-doping department by Diack to disrupt and corrupt its anti-doping work in November 2011. Cissé was put in charge of Russian athlete biological passport cases, a move the IAAF anti-doping manager Thomas Capdevielle called “unusual and inappropriate”.

Pierre Weiss

IAAF general secretary 2006-11

Knew of widespread Russian doping by October 2009, when he sent a letter to Balakhnichev warning: “This matter of the Russian athletes’ blood levels is now so serious ... that immediate and drastic action is needed.” As he explained, Russian test results at the 2009 world championships “strongly suggest a systematic abuse of blood doping or EPO-related products”.

Essar Gabriel

IAAF general secretary 2011-15

Unclear what he knew, if anything, about Russian doping. Only mentioned in passing in the recent IAAF ethics commission report.

Gabriel Dollé

Director of the IAAF’s medical and anti-doping department


Given his role, it’s likely he would have known about the extent of the Russian blood passport problems from 2009, but from 2011 “actively corrupted departmental operations” according to Wada.

Sebastian Coe

IAAF president 2015-present

Coe insists that while he was generally aware of the problems with Russia and doping from the time he competed onwards, he had no knowledge of any specific corruption within the IAAF or Russian athletics despite working for the IAAF since 2003.

Thomas Capdevielle

IAAF anti-doping manager


Knew of problems with Russian athletes at least as early as 3 November 2011, when, according to the IAAF ethics committee report, he was asked by Dollé, “to prepare and send a note to Cissé summarising the status of the numerous ABP Russian cases, then under proceedings or under investigations”. Praised by Pound for trying to do the right thing.

Huw Roberts

Senior counsel August 2015-present

Roberts told the IAAF’s ethics commission that he first became aware of Shobukhova’s extreme blood profile towards the end of 2012 and resigned from the IAAF a few months later after repeatedly confronting Diack over the failure to sanction Russian athletes. Praised by Pound for trying to counteract corruption in organisation.

Papa Massata Diack

IAAF marketing executive


Allegedly a key figure in the corruption of the anti-doping unit from 2011 onwards, along with Cissé and Dollé, and banned for life for his supposed part in the extortion of Shobukhova by the IAAF ethics commission early this month. Currently in Senegal; an Interpol warrant for his arrest on alleged corruption and money laundering charges has been issued.

Sergey Bubka

Senior IAAF vice-president 2007-present

Unclear what he knew, if anything, about what was going on in Russia. In December 2015 he said he was “deeply shocked” by claims of systematic doping in Russian athletics.

Valentin Balakhnichev

IAAF treasurer 2011-15 Head of Russian athletics 1991-2015

Banned for life by the IAAF ethics commission last week for allegedly extorting money from Shobukhova in conjunction with Papa Massata Diack and Cissé.


Sean Ingle

The GuardianTramp

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